The Story of the Awesome Kally

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Who is Kally?  Aka Kally, aka Kallysti, author Stephanie Ciofalo is one of the FantasyFic writers.  I should say she is one of the very talented FantasyFic writers and also one of the administrators at the site.  I am also proud to call her a colleague.

Kally is really an amazing person.   She has more energy than a pack of chimpanzees and a most delightful sense of humor.  Add those to her writing talent, and you have a woman driven to write (which means she will be successful) and yet is still able to laugh at herself.

This lady, a fantasy fiction writer, has invented a world that is unique.  I have never seen anything closely resembling it in any literature I have read.  Mind you, I haven’t read even all the classic fantasies, never mind contemporary ones, but I still think I would have heard of a world like this during shop talk.  She has peopled it quite naturally with the most interesting men and women (and children) you would ever hope to meet.  They are natural and true to their own culture in a way that is masterfully overseen.  No, I don’t mean author intrusion; I mean making sure that the reader’s willing suspension of disbelief is never broken.

I don’t want to tell you about this world, because that is Kally’s province, but believe me when I tell you this lady just might hit the bestseller list with at least one of her books in the series she is writing.  Just my opinion, but I’m keeping an eye on her.

Stephanie Ciofalo

Author Stephanie Ciofalo - aka Kallysti

The unusual thing about Kally is that she didn’t start out to be a writer.  She didn’t think she had that much skill at it in the beginning and went to college to get a geology degree.  Then when she started playing EverQuest, then EverQuest II, she started writing fan fiction about her character in the game and the characters of her friends.  This is how she met her husband, and they had an interesting courtship online by writing these stories together.  People liked them (the stories, I mean – although they liked Kally and her hubby-to-be as well).

Encouraged about her writing, Kally joined FantasyFic in 2007 and proceeded to blossom (writerly-wise) like a magic rose under the summer light of two suns (her world has two suns, I believe).  She wrote material that just blew me away.  Of course, I encouraged and helped her.  She was one of those delightful writers that is polite about critiques and suggestions.  (When I was editor at Warcry and Silky Venom, I would only critique if people asked me to – for safety reasons :P).  For Kally, however, there was no looking back.

If you’d like to see some examples of her writings, visit her at her site, Stephanie’s Stories, where she is currently talking about the things she has written.


8 responses to “The Story of the Awesome Kally

  1. Oh gods, now I’m all embarrassed! Totally didn’t see this coming. Thank you, Ra…I mean, Sandra 😉 I guess I’ll have to make that post outlining my little world soon! (Which just has one sun & one moon each, lol, although I never really thought about it much)

    Is it really that extensive? A majority of my time was spent on the races. I just don’t like to leave questions unanswered. The world itself is…I mean, I’ve never drawn a map (either digitally or by hand). I’ve been meaning to, it’s there in my head, I practically live there, but…the editing & *shudder* synopsis have been taking up all my time these last couple weeks.

    Haha, I’m all flustered. Anyway, I wouldn’t have come half so far without you, ma’am.


    • Ah, sorry, Kally, I didn’t mean to embarrass you. I just wanted to make sure people knew about your writing. And I didn’t mean just the world…I meant the races too, which are a major part of it. I meant “world” in the sense I would say “Earth,” meaning not only the continents but the people on it.

      I also didn’t meant to put pressure on you. I’m just so excited about your blossoming (literarily, of course). Take your time. Creating suspense in the reader is a good technique 😛

      One of the ways you’ll find to get traffic to your blog is the same as at authonomy: visit other blogs and leave comments. That’ll raise their curiosity and they are liable to come and visit you. Not always, but often enough.

      There are a lot of good writers in the WordPress blogosphere. One I can recommend, who has a lot of common sense and writes from the heart is Haley Whitehall. She doesn’t write fantasy, but historical fiction, and she is pretty darn good. As I said, travel around and look for people you have affinity for, but my bloglist is a pretty good start. 🙂


  2. Thanks for the intro, Sandra.

    Stephanie (and Kally) are lucky to have such an enthusiastic fan in you.


  3. Sandra,
    Thank you for introducing me to Kally. She sounds like an awesome author, and you an exacting editor. I am learning so much from your blog. For instance, I wasn’t familiar with the term “fan fiction” until today. I think I’ll need months to absorb all of the interesting and well-written material on your blogs. Janet


    • Funnily enough, I feel the same way about your blog, Janet – all the interesting information about animals and the lessons we learn from them. Your knowledge and experience in this area are invaluable and compelling. Guess it takes one to know one, eh?

      Kally is worth getting to know. I am one of her biggest fans, apart from her husband, I guess. And her mother-in-law 😛 She had great talent right from the start, was determined to learn and refine, and so she has, right up to, IMO, professional level. Wait until you read her novels. I think any publishing house that turns her down would be crazy, but that is just me.

      Okay, I don’t want to embarrass her anymore…she tends to be more of an introvert, while I am the classic extrovert. Being one, I sometimes tend to say more than I should. I should hand out masking tape to everyone I talk to and give them permission to tape my mouth if I talk too long.

      I remember in grade school, I kept getting report cards with notes from the teacher…Sandra is an excellent student, but Sandra talks far too much lol.

      Thanks for dropping by, Janet 🙂


      • Raya, you’re my online mommy! ❤

        It's funny mentioning about publishing houses…I just went to the Henderson Writers Group meeting last night (it's a 90 mile drive each way, ouch) in preparation for the Writers Conference I'm going to in Aprial in Las Vegas (about 100 miles each way, lol). It was a very informative meeting about writing bios & synopses. Plus, I learned a few things about the layout & the format of the conference itself, which is a good thing. I hate going into something like this blind. Now it's not too much better – dark & fuzzy as opposed to blackness – but at least it's improved. At least I won't get lost driving there now!

        And one of the organizers for the conference made a funny comment (haha-funny not strange-funny) that made me feel better. They were discussing the 10-minute pitch session appointments available with the agents & publishers & how you're lucky to have enough to say in TWO minutes & how sometimes agents don't even continue listening to you pitch the full 10 minutes. This guy said kind of half-jokingly, "We're paying them for a weekend in Las Vegas. They better listen to everybody!"

        And fyi, I do lurk around on the folks' blogs who've commented on your site, Sandra, as I'm sure a couple curious lurkers have peeked at mine, but I haven't the time to cultivate thoughtful postings so that I may receive others in return. That's sort of why I gave up Authonomy 😦 I spent so much time giving out careful critiques on Authonomy so I could get some in return that I had no time left over to actually MAKE those suggested changes, you know?

        I understand the process of networking & how it's important to put your name out there, everywhere, etc. But I'm already doing so much that is counter to my personality that it's just one more project I haven't the energy for. Cultivating contacts through networks like this may come naturally to you, as you said, you are EXTREMELY extroverted, but me? I just want to go back to the part that made me happiest. Sitting in my dark little corner, dreaming & writing. It would be one more project that I'd feel obligated to keep up (and it's not you that's obligating me, it's the obligation of updating regularly enough to keep people reading, if that makes sense).

        Well, lookit that. A long enough reply that I could've made a blog post out of it 😉


        • I understand where you are coming from on that one, Kally. I actually am running into the same trouble. Wert will yell at me if he finds that out, because he keeps telling me to do things for myself, not for everyone else. He’s right, except I love my blog, so in part this IS doing something for myself. My biggest problem is I get so sidetracked.

          Anyhow, I was just trying to be helpful, not snow you under with more obligations, as you probably know. And authonomy ended up being a nightmare, because I really didn’t want to read all those books (although to be honest I found some real gems that I would have liked to read all the way through, but not time *sigh*).

          And, see, if I’m your online mommy…well, all I can say is that rank hath privilege 😛


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